Caramelization, the technique of cooking down ingredients to bring out their natural sweetness, is the hymn that rings true to all areas of Cara Greenstein’s blog.
Cara is the owner and content creator of Caramelized, an award-winning food and lifestyle content source that combines the best of cooking, home décor, event conceptualization, and exploration to elevate everyday experiences.
What started as a school assignment-turned hobby eventually caught the attention of others through its bright and warm aesthetic, and mindful attention to detail.
Following a natural growth trajectory, Caramelized slowly began expanding to include other experiential elements surrounding food, such as tablescape decorations and dinner party outfit ideas.
The blog aims to stimulate readers into a process of thoughtfulness: how a meal can be reflective of the event being hosted or the season its ingredients represent.
Cara focuses on demonstrating the beauty of seasonality in her dishes. Her recipes are not overly complicated and remain approachable, with the focus placed on enhancing key ingredients to make something special.
Her use of seasonal elements is symbolic of the transitions that mind, body, and nature undergo at those points in the year, bringing presence and intention to every eating experience.
“Food is like this beautiful, common language. Understanding who you’re cooking for or entertaining allows you to elevate your dishes in compelling and relatable ways.”
For Cara, part of the process is about finding inspiration wherever you go, and several of her recipes have been influenced by a particular ingredient she tasted while traveling. This section of the blog is reserved for travel and recreational ideas.
Additionally, Cara serves as a local ambassador for Memphians on restaurant and activity recommendations and provides suggestions in real-time through Instagram.
“The beauty of social media is that you can get inspiration right at your fingertips.”
From the colors of the dishes to the fresh flowers that frame them, Cara enhances her meals with aesthetically pleasing elements.
“You’re taking something like a meal and just doing a couple of little things to make it memorable and special.”
Cara’s enthusiasm for cooking is credited to her Jewish heritage, a culture and religion whose customs, holidays, and rituals most often take place around a family dinner table.
As a rabbi’s daughter, the Caramelized content maker enjoys weaving Jewish strands of tradition into her recipes, but with more contemporary touches and her own spin.
Another portion of the Caramelized blog focuses on interior design, with articles helping readers create a home space that is both restorative and encouraging.
“The pandemic taught us about the definition of home now being one that serves multiple purposes, all of which need creative expression.”
Cara explains how a kitchen’s design, for instance, can inspire new recipe creations, food styling, and even hosting ideas.
Cara’s latest venture is a culmination of her love for hospitality and desire to create in-person demonstrations for guests to interact with.
Her Memphis-based Airbnb is in the center of town and features a fully-stocked kitchen with recipes for the experimentally-inclined guest. She also provides visitors with resources and neighborhood recommendations if they prefer to travel about.
By Shlomit Ovadia
Photo by Christen Jones